Here 50 years after its original release, it remains one of the most influential and relevant albums ever recorded in popular music. From the songwriting, to the guitar tones, to the overall style and vibe, artists in country and rock and everything in between have been trying to capture it.
Townes Van Zandt
The songs from Dwight Yoakam’s debut album Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc. Etc. from 1986 remain unavailable via download and streaming services after they first disappeared on March 3rd amid a pending lawsuit between Yoakam and the Warner Music Group.
John Lomax III continued in the family business, but in a way that ultimately had major impacts in country music through the many Texas-born songwriters that would shake country music up as part of the 70’s Outlaw movement, and later in the emergence of alt-country.
If not for author Jan Reid, there would be no Austin City Limits. And without Austin City Limits, there may not have been any national awareness of what was happening in the Texas Capital back in the early and mid 70’s and beyond,which became the catalyst for country’s Outlaw movement.
Steve Earle and his backing band The Dukes will be releasing a record of songs written by Steve Earle’s late son Justin Townes Earle who passed away in late August at the age of 38. Though details are still coming together, Steve Earle announced the album on Wednesday, September 16th.
According to social media posts on Justin Townes Earle’s official Facebook and Instagram accounts, the singer, songwriter, second generation performer, and Nashville native has passed away the age of 38. The news was released on Sunday evening, August 23rd, though no cause of death has been given at this time.
Though Dean Dillon has written songs for scores of artists, including Chris Stapleton, Gary Stewart, Vince Gill, Vern Gosdin, Lee Ann Womack, and so many others, it’s his partnership with George Strait that has gone on to become legendary, and is the undeniable impetus for putting him in the Hall of Fame.
With the recent death of John Prine at the hands of COVID-19, the question has been posed by many about the legendary songwriter’s prospects of ever being inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. It’s an interesting discussion point for sure, and one with a few important qualifiers.
It’s the often-used cliche to say someone died while doing what they love. For some, it’s a dream they wish upon. For David Olney, it was a reality. “Olney was in the middle of his third song when he stopped, apologized, and shut his eyes. He was very still, sitting upright with his guitar on…”
It’s time. In fact, it’s well past time. And the people calling the shots shouldn’t make the same mistake they did with Chris Stapleton’s rendition of “Tennessee Whiskey.” We’re talking of course about Morgan Wallen’s cover of Jason Isbell’s song “Cover Me Up.” It’s time to release it as a proper radio single.
When the Ken Burns documentary was first announced a few years ago, the hope was the film could act like a big reset button on the status of country music, and give a boost to many of the songs and artists abandoned by radio in the present day. It has been a big boon in sales and streams for many of the classic country artists featured.
The 7th Episode in the series was unique in that 30 more minutes were added to give Ken Burns and his team the time to delve into a decade of the music, explain the important influence of Texas songwriters and the emergence of the Outlaw movement in the early and mid 70’s, all while keeping up with the goings on in popular country in Nashville.
Armadillo World Headquarters, Billy Joe Shaver, Billy Sherrill, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, Freddy Fender, George Jones, Gram Parsons, Guy Clark, Hank Williams Jr., Hazel Smith, Hillbilly Central, Johnny Rodriguez, Ken Burns, Merle Haggard, Tammy Wynette, Tompall Glaser, Townes Van Zandt, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson
What started out to be a small and intimate alternative to Austin’s sprawling SXSW gathering every March, and that was only known initially through invite or word of mouth, has now become arguably the most important and exclusive gatherings in all of American roots music every year.
Amy Winehouse, Angie McMahon, Bonnie Bishop, Chris Masterson, Chris Shiflett, Courtney Marie Andrews, Elanore Whitmore, Haley Heynderickx, Hayes Carll, Logan Ledger, Luck Reunion, Lukas Nelson, Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real, Mavis Staples, Miss Tess, Mountain Main, Nikki Lane, Paul Cauthen, Randy Houser, Ray Charles, Steve Earle, Sunny War, The Mastersons, Townes Van Zandt, Tyler Childers, Willie Nelson, Yola
This story has been updated. Here in the age of information, when the access to music is infinite, and every bit of recorded material from artists past and present is right at your very fingertips at any given moment, releases of old archived scratch material from an artist who’s been dead over twenty years rarely […]
The Steel Woods have arrived ladies and gentlemen, and with them a whole new legacy of Southern rock to enjoy in the present tense, and look forward to for the foreseeable future. With ‘Old News’ they lay it all to bear, leave nothing to chance, throw out their best shots, and scream for rightful consideration.
A new posthumous collection of Townes Van Zandt recordings is on its way from Fat Possum and TVZ Records. Made in early 1973, the songs come from a recording session with journalist, musician, and close Townes Van Zandt friend, the late Bill Hedgepeth. They were recorded in Hedgepeth’s home studio in Atlanta.
“No way I could get out of doing this record,” Steve Earle says. “When I get to the other side, I didn’t want to run into Guy having made the ‘TOWNES’ record and not one about him … Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark were like Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg to me.”
The Country Music Hall of Fame has partnered with Sony Music’s Legacy Recordings to release a 36-song companion double album to coincide with what the public can expect to see and hear as part of the upcoming Outlaws & Armadillos exhibit. The track list of the album reveals just how deep the exhibit will go.
Amanda Shires, Ashley Monroe, Billy Joe Shaver, Bobby Bare, Chris Gantry, Colter Wall, Commander Cody, Country Music Hall of Fame, Dave Cobb, Doug Sahm, Gary P. Nunn, Jack Ingram, Jamey Johnson, Jason Boland, Jason Isbell, Jessi Colter, Joe Ely, John Hartford, Kimmie Rhodes, Kinky Friedman, Michael Martin Murphey, Mickey Newbury, Outlaws & Armadillos, Shooter Jennings, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Terry Allen, Townes Van Zandt, Willis Alan Ramsey
Richard Dobson never found the fame many of his more recognized songwriting contemporaries did, but he was cherished as an equal by them, and the fans who sought out his music, and followed his journey, inspired and intrigued by his free spirit, his capability with words, and his ability not just to tell great stories, but to live them.
Canadian country artist Colter Wall is once again receiving some worthy exposure via a critically-acclaimed film the promises to be an Oscar contender. ‘Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri’ is a dark comedy. Colter Wall’s “Sleeping on the Blacktop” plays prominently at the beginning of the film’s racy and explosive trailer.
To us, it’s a sad state of affairs that Guy, Susanna, Townes, and so many more that made up the core of the alternative to country in the 70’s and 80’s are gone, but to Rodney Crowell, these weren’t just distant stars on some stage that perhaps he got to see once or twice in his life, these were his close personal friends.
Lindi Ortega is no stranger to the dark regions of the mind, or the mortality that hangs over all of us like an ever-present nightmare, just waiting to swoop down and become our fateful reality. As a student of the folk rituals surrounding Día de Muertos through her half-Mexican heritage, her funeral veil, her ghostly pale skin…
Ortega recently decided that her five-year stint in Nashville was no longer worth the struggle. She moved back to Canada, and almost decided to leave country music behind as well. But out of her struggles, losing her label, and looking for a way forward she has recorded a four-song EP called ‘Til The Goin’ Gets Gone.’
If you’re going to make a movie based in West Texas about the destruction of the agrarian economy and the way the banks rape the poor and why so much of the American heartland has turned into a ghost town husk of what it once was, what better way to embellish the moments than to include the songs of artists like Ray Wylie Hubbard, Scott H. Biram, & Colter Wall?